Here we go again, a bit of rag-bag mix of different bits and bobs added to the list over the past week.
This weeks post is powered by Radio 2, I’m cooking dinner alright!
22/07/2015 – Bourne South Fen.
The golden rod was rammed with hoverflies. Most of which were the distinctive Episyrphus balteatus, the marmalade hoverfly. A few other species were dotted about in with them, Myathropa florea, Scaeva pyrastri and two Volucella inanis. A new tick also lurked!
Eristalis pertinax – 1146. Using the book by Ball and Morris (2013) I was confident I had got an ID. Posted later on the hoverfly FB page confirmed my thoughts. It’s not too difficult to do with yellow front and middle tarsi and a tapering abdomen. Maybe three or four we darting around the rather large clump of golden rod. Its one of the first to emerge in spring and is pretty common everywhere across the UK.
23/07/2015 – Bourne South Fen
With the weather not being too great, the golden rod was a bit quiet. I headed out on to the verge outside the yard and did some sweeping before sitting on the floor in the poly tunnel to pooter up a few bugs to look at when I got home. A few other bits and bobs were noted down, most notably Heterotoma planicornis – a link here from the British Bugs website will load up a picture of this splendid bug.
Deraeocoris ruber – 1147. Quite a reddish looking thing, I thought it was probably from the Miridae family, the plant bugs. Three of these were swept, one was taken and the rest released. I’m sure I’ve seen these before but I’ve never bothered to much with bugs… until now! It feeds on small insects and can be found on a wide range of plants.
Liocoris tripustulatus – 1148. Two of these were dobbed out of the net onto the sorting tray, one being pooted up for examination when I got home. Apparently variable but distinctive, this bug is associated with nettles.
24/07/2015 – Bourne South Fen
Idaea dimidiata, single dotted wave – 1149. The moth check of the poly tunnels always turns up something, this is time it was the rather stunning single dotted wave. Sat with its wings spread on the plastic of the tunnel, it never moved all day after its discovery in the morning. The larvae from Autumn to Winter feed on cow parsley and burnet saxifrage and the adults are found in damper place like wet wood and fenland.
24/07/2015 – A wood in South Lincs.
Me and JL met the county recorder for Linkisheer at the wood to show him P. violaceum, the beetle that needs no introduction. We shonked around the woods and I inevitably picked up some new ticks and gleaned a bit of knowledge from him at the same time.
Dipsacus pilosus, small teasel – 1150. A stand of this attractive teasel was just inside the gateway. It differs from the common teasel Dipsacus fullonum by having smaller and differently shaped flowers.
Athous haemorrhoidalis – 1151. CB, the county recorder, pulled this from some low hanging vegetation. The dreaded click beetles, I’m currently collecting a few different specimens of various sizes so I can make head or arse (Linkisheer speak) of the keys. The description for it on the WCG website is here.
Phaedon tumidulus – 1152. While walking up the central ride through the middle of the wood, I noticed a bunch of leaf beetles making light work of some hogweed. A handsome leaf beetle I would avoid like the plague had I not have been with CB.
Chrysops relictus – 1153. Something buzzed about us as we walked further into the wood. It was a horsefly of some description, I wanted to find out what was trying to tap into my blood stream. I wafted my makeshift pillowcase and coat hanger net about in the air but couldn’t make the capture, it was CB who netted it. Potted up and pinned at home, I set about identifying it. I have the soldier fly book by Stubbs and Drake and quickly found the key and plates. Looks good for a male C. relictus. The male feeds at flowers, only the female bites. There is every chance I am wrong with the ID…
24/07/2015 – Night Walking With Carabids, Billingborough, South Lincs
Calathus melanocephalus – 1154. Pwoarrr, what a little carabid. It stuck out like a sore thumb and I knew right away that I hadn’t seen it before. Keyed using Mikes Insects Keys found here, this little stunner is active at night like many carabids. Walking around at night looking for beetles is something I read about on Mark Telfers website here and is well worth doing.Walking with Carabids should deffo be a T.V show.
Stuart Ball & Roger Morris (2013). Britain’s Hoverflies: An Introduction to the Hoverflies of Britain (WILDGuides). Princeton University Press.
Alan Stubbs & Martin Drake (2001). British Soldierflies and Their Allies: A Field Guide to the Larger British Brachycera. British Entomological & Natural History Society.